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Thread: Dirty or Clean barrel?

  1. #1
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    Dirty or Clean barrel?

    Hi there... ok, don't get me wrong, I keep a very clean rifle(s), however just having bought a tikka varmint 223, I find it shoots clean at 1.5inchs at 100m, and after 15 or so shots it tightens up to .3 to. 5 moa.
    So my question to the team is, should I leave this rifle semi dirty or fouled( after the 15 or so rounds through it) to have the best accuracy the next time I make a shot with it?
    Apologies if this has been covered off elsewhere, I couldn't find any link.

  2. #2
    Member Marty Henry's Avatar
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    New rifle or new to you? If new it will settle down with a bit more use I expect.

  3. #3
    Member mawzer308's Avatar
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    In short yes leave it fouled, (most rifles shoot better fouled). Be sure to leave a light layer of oil in the bore when you store it to prevent rust and obviously a dry patch pulled through before you next fire it.

  4. #4
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    No I bought it used from someone I know. It wouldn't have seen 50 rounds through it I'd say. So no copper solvent?

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    Member mawzer308's Avatar
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    Not unless accuracy starts decreasing
    Cordite likes this.

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    With a hunting rifle where the first shot lands on a clean barrel is the important thing to me.

  7. #7
    Member chainsaw's Avatar
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    Probably need to understand your cleaning method before saying too much. But for sure don’t store your rifle over winter or any length of time with out a decent clean to remove carbon fouling (bronze brush then hoppes and repeat as needed) and then put some gun oil thru it before putting away. Otherwise you risk pitting and corrosion in bore.

  8. #8
    Member 199p's Avatar
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    You can semi clean where your clean off some of the carbon allowing the oil to get to more steel in the barrel but not superclean to where it wont shoot well.

    I run a couple of heading rods in my safe 24/7 works bloody well holding the moisture back

    Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk
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  9. #9
    Caretaker jakewire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tetawa View Post
    With a hunting rifle where the first shot lands on a clean barrel is the important thing to me.
    You see this is it
    I've been interested in this now for 40yrs, I really don't care about anything but that first shot
    Rabbits to Moose [not that I've been moose hunting] but if lets say your out varminting and your rifle throws the first shot out of a clean barrel an inch, inch and a half away from the group, whats the use of that at 400 yrds.

    Keep your rifle dirty "They" say... well I'm not sure about that either
    I've had rifles that throw the first clean shot out of the group, I just haven't had them very long.
    chainsaw likes this.
    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

  10. #10
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    Thanks all this is interesting. I guess perhaps I was thinking is, is it ok to keep your barrel fouled for that spot on first shot, vs any damage fouling may produce...
    I hope I've framed that up as well as it sounds in my mind lol

  11. #11
    Caretaker jakewire's Avatar
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    I can see what you are saying, Guess my answer is, no I don't like storing a dirty barrel
    Other opinions may differ.
    ChrisW likes this.
    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

  12. #12
    Member Marty Henry's Avatar
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    Guess it depends on your cleaning regieme and what you call dirty. From new my workhorse 223 has only got a pull through with hoppes 9 on it if not used for a day or two and occasionally a boresnake or bronze brush. I have never specifically cleaned for carbon or copper and the round count is over 4000. The bore looks greyish even after "cleaning" and occasionally a copper streak shows so thats when the brush comes out.
    I guess the barrels in equilibrium as it shoots a consistent poi.
    I used to shoot target 22 and remember that if you cleaned the bore it could take 50 or more rounds before it settled down again.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marty Henry View Post
    Guess it depends on your cleaning regieme and what you call dirty. From new my workhorse 223 has only got a pull through with hoppes 9 on it if not used for a day or two and occasionally a boresnake or bronze brush. I have never specifically cleaned for carbon or copper and the round count is over 4000. The bore looks greyish even after "cleaning" and occasionally a copper streak shows so thats when the brush comes out.
    I guess the barrels in equilibrium as it shoots a consistent poi.
    I used to shoot target 22 and remember that if you cleaned the bore it could take 50 or more rounds before it settled down again.
    That's sounds spot on. I'll take that advice. Thanks all!

  14. #14
    Member Driverman's Avatar
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    If using your rifle a lot just use a tight dry pull through to remove loose crud. When storing up for a while do a decent clean. Your first shot after cleaning which can be an inch or two off is normally due to the minor traces of oil and solvents still in the bore acting as a lubricant and which get burnt off with the first few shots. A good gun oil can penetrate the metal and still be there after repeated dry pull throughs.

  15. #15
    L.T
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    If it shoots probably just leave it. Another thing to remember is that your fouler can go in the group at 100 yards even after a clean but be 40 fps behind. If I can I'll always put a shot down my barrel before hunting.
    Here you can see with the Labradar the 300 Norma is about 50 fps behind with the fouler but the other 4 are right close with each other.
    Name:  300 NM speed.PNG
Views: 184
Size:  28.5 KB


    Its probably a very opinionated topic regarding how much cleaning to do etc. I usually clean every 75-100 rounds or so, depending on how much copper you can see in the crown with a torch. I have never had issues with stainless barrel corroding while hunting.
    R93 and erniec like this.

 

 

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